Top D-backs Draft pick from every season

July 27th, 2022

Like most teams, the D-backs have had their share of hits and misses when it comes to their first pick in the MLB Draft, and early in franchise history, there were some years where they did not have a first-round pick because of their aggressive moves in the free-agent market.

While some of their best homegrown players like Paul Goldschmidt and Brandon Webb were later-round finds, Arizona also hit it big with first picks in Stephen Drew and Justin Upton.

Below is a look at the top pick in each MLB Draft the D-backs have participated in. When they had multiple first-round picks, we listed just the top selection.

2022: Druw Jones, OF, Wesleyan School (Peachtree Corners, Ga.) (No. 2)

Jones was ranked by many evaluators as the best prospect in the Draft and he topped the D-backs' wish list heading into it. Jones has similar tools to dad, former big league outfielder Andruw. Jones has plenty of bat speed and he will continue to develop his plus power as he fills out his 6-foot-4 frame. A plus-plus runner, he was regarded as the best defensive center fielder in the high school crop of players and possibly the best defender overall.

2021: Jordan Lawlar, SS, Jesuit College Preparatory School (Dallas) (No. 6)

Lawlar is regarded as a five-tool prospect and was named Texas' Gatorade Baseball Player of the Year for 2021. The right-handed hitter uses a patient approach and often attacks the gaps with a compact swing. Given his impressive bat speed and 6-foot-2 frame, he figures to develop more power as he continues to add strength.

2020: Bryce Jarvis, RHP, Duke (No. 18)

Jarvis is the son of former big league pitcher, Kevin. He spent the 2020 season at the team's alternate training site before opening 2021 with High-A Hillsboro and earning a promotion to Double-A Amarillo.

2019: Corbin Carroll, OF, Lakeside (Wash.) School (No. 16)

Ranked as the organization's top prospect by MLB Pipeline, Carroll moved from Rookie ball to Low-A in 2019. After spending 2020 season at the team's alternate training site, he opened 2021 at High-A Hillsboro. He suffered a season-ending shoulder surgery in the first week of the season.

2018: Matt McClain, SS, Beckman (Calif.) HS (No. 25)

McClain elected not to sign with the D-backs and instead went on to play for UCLA.

2017: Pavin Smith, 1B, Virginia (No. 7)

Smith initially struggled a bit in pro ball, but by 2019, he had begun to turn the corner and made his big league debut for the D-backs in 2020. After transforming his body, Smith is able to play all three outfield positions as well as first base.

2016: Anfernee Grier, OF, Auburn (No. 39)

The D-backs lost their top pick after signing free agent Zack Greinke during the offseason, but they had a first-round supplemental pick. Grier struggled to hit at the pro level, and he was released by Arizona in 2020.

2015: Dansby Swanson, SS, Vanderbilt (No. 1)

Swanson was the second No. 1 overall pick in franchise history, joining Justin Upton (2005). Swanson never even spent a full season with the organization as he was dealt after the 2015 season to the Braves as part of a package for right-hander Shelby Miller.

2014: Touki Toussaint, RHP, Coral Springs (Fla.) Christian Academy (No. 16)

Toussaint pitched in the D-backs organization for just over a year before he was dealt to the Braves. He reached the Majors with Atlanta in 2018.

2013: Braden Shipley, RHP, Nevada (No. 15)

Shipley reached the big leagues in 2016, but he was never able to consistently quite translate his Minor League success and was eventually let go by the organization.

2012: Stryker Trahan, C, Acadiana (La.) HS (No. 26)

Trahan struggled both offensively and behind the plate in pro ball. The D-backs tried shifting him to the outfield, but he was out of the organization and pro ball after the 2016 season.

2011: Trevor Bauer, RHP, UCLA (No. 3)

Bauer made his Major League debut in 2012 with the D-backs, but that offseason, he was dealt to Cleveland as part of a three-team deal. He would go on to win the NL Cy Young Award in 2020 with the Reds.

2010: Barrett Loux, RHP, Texas A&M (No. 6)

Loux failed his physical, and the D-backs elected not to sign him. He was declared a free agent by MLB and signed with the Rangers.

2009: Bobby Borchering, 3B, Bishop Verot (Fla.) HS (No. 16)

A switch-hitter, Borchering drew comparisons to Chipper Jones coming out of the Draft, but it never clicked for him in pro ball and the D-backs released him after the 2012 season.

2008: Daniel Schlereth, LHP, Arizona (No. 26)

Schlereth reached the big leagues with the D-backs in 2009. He was dealt to Detroit that offseason as part of a three-team trade that brought Edwin Jackson to Arizona and sent Max Scherzer from Arizona to Detroit.

2007: Jarrod Parker, RHP, Norwell (Ind.) HS (No. 9)

Parker made his big league debut in 2011, and he was so effective down the stretch that he was kept on the team's postseason roster that year. He was dealt to the A's after the season as part of the package for right-hander Trevor Cahill. He pitched well in two seasons for Oakland before devastating arm injuries ended his career prematurely.

2006: Max Scherzer, RHP, Missouri (No. 11)

Scherzer shot through the Arizona system and made his big league debut in 2008. The D-backs had concerns about his ability to stay healthy long term and dealt him to Detroit as part of a three-team trade after the 2009 season.

2005: Justin Upton, SS, Great Bridge (Va.) HS (No. 1)

Upton was selected as a shortstop, but the team quickly moved him to center field and then eventually to right. Upton reached the big leagues in 2007 and played for the D-backs until he was traded to the Braves after the 2012 season.

2004: Stephen Drew, SS, Florida State (No. 15)

Drew slipped in the Draft due to signability concerns, and the D-backs grabbed him at No. 15. He reached the big leagues the next year and was a big part of the team until being dealt to the A's in August 2012.

2003: Conor Jackson, 1B, Berkeley (No. 19)

Jackson reached the big leagues in 2005 and had an OPS of over .800 in 2006-08. He came down with Valley Fever in Spring Training in 2009, and he was never the same after that. He was eventually traded to the A's in 2010.

2002: Sergio Santos, SS, Mater Dei (Calif.) HS (No. 27)

Santos never made it to the big leagues as a hitter. He was dealt to the Blue Jays after the 2005 season and converted to pitching. He spent six years in the Majors as a reliever.

2001: Jason Bulger, RHP, Valdosta State (No. 22)

Bulger debuted with the D-backs in 2005 and was dealt to the Angels for infielder Alberto Callaspo during Spring Training the following year. He went on to pitch six years for the Angels and made a total of 125 big league appearances.

2000: Mike Schultz, RHP, Loyola Marymount (No. 69)

The D-backs did not have a first-round pick in 2000 as a result of signing free-agent right-hander Russ Springer. Schultz appeared in just one Major League game in 2007 with the D-backs, but he had a nice five-year career in Japan.

1999: Corey Myers, SS, Desert Vista (Ariz.) HS (No. 4)

The selection of Myers with such a high pick surprised many in the industry. Myers spent nine seasons in the Minor Leagues and one in independent ball, climbing as high as Triple-A, but he never made it to the big leagues.

1998: Darryl Conyer, OF, Mission Bay (Calif.) HS (No. 103)

The D-backs did not have a first-round pick by virtue of signing free-agent shortstop Jay Bell in November 1997 or a second-round pick for inking right-hander Willie Blair. Conyer played three years in Rookie ball before his pro career ended.

1997: Jack Cust, OF, Immaculata (N.J.) HS (No. 30)

Cust reached the big leagues with the D-backs in 2001, and he was traded that offseason to the Rockies. Cust spent 10 years in the big leagues hitting a total of 105 homers.

1996: Nick Bierbrodt, LHP, Millikan (Calif.) HS (No. 30)

Bierbrodt made it to the Majors with the D-backs in 2001, and he was dealt just prior to the Trade Deadline that year to the Rays in exchange for starting pitcher Albie Lopez. The left-hander played parts of three seasons in the big leagues, appearing in 38 games (25 starts).